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Telescope Nerd » Brands » Zhumell Telescope Company: Market, Quality, History

Zhumell Telescope Company: Market, Quality, History

Zhumell is an optical company that produces telescopes. The company was founded in Duluth, Minnesota and moved to Omaha, Nebraska after being purchased by Hayneedle in 2006. Zhumell offers a relatively small selection of telescopes compared to their competitors, but they have established a reputation for popular models such as the Zhumell Z130. 

Zhumell has actively made contributions to the Dobsonian telescope market as well, with their 8”, 10”, and 12” Z-series designs. The quality of Zhumell’s products is similar to its competitors because they work with the same manufacturers. Throughout Zhumell’s history, the brand has changed ownership and locations multiple times. The most recent change in location was a result of an acquisition by one of their biggest competitors.

Is Zhumell Company Out of Business?

No, Zhumell is not out of business, but it has changed hands numerous times since its inception. Zhumell ceased operations in 2017, resulting in the widespread belief that Zhumell is out of business. However, Celestron Acquisitions LLC purchased Zhumell and restarted operations in 2018. Since then, they have discontinued their Dobsonian telescopes and focused on their Altazimuth reflectors, such as the Z130. Zhumell does not sell telescopes through their website, but they are still able to be purchased through third-party vendors.

Who Manufactures Zhumell Telescopes?

Zhumell’s telescopes are primarily manufactured by Guan Sheng Optical (GSO) in Taiwan and Synta Technology Corporation in China. Zhumell’s Dobsonian telescopes were manufactured by GSO, but they were discontinued upon Celestron’s acquisition of Zhumell. This is likely because Celestron is owned by Synta Technology Corporation, a primary competitor of GSO. Synta still manufactures Zhumell’s Altazimuth reflectors and their components in Jiangsu, China.

Are Zhumell Telescopes Good Quality?

Zhumell telescopes are good quality for most observations but are generally insufficient for detailed, deep-sky astronomy. The quality of Zhumell’s optics is similar to high-quality brands such as Celestron and Meade, as they work with similar manufacturers, but the designs are better suited for entry-level astronomy. 

Zhumell’s Dobsonian telescopes are commonly used by beginners because they offer high quality and large apertures for a low cost. However, their Dobsonian designs were discontinued to shift their focus towards Altazimuth reflectors, such as the Zhumell Z100, Z113, and Z130. The Zhumell Z130 is the largest and most common of their telescopes because of its high-quality optics and ease of use. These telescopes are currently sold and distributed by Zhumell’s owner and partners.

Who Distributes Zhumell Telescopes?

Zhumell’s telescopes have been distributed by Celestron since the acquisition on March 20th, 2018. Their distribution facility is located at 475 Alaska Avenue, Torrance California. Throughout Zhumell’s history, they have worked with a variety of manufacturers, owners and partners.

What is the History of Zhumell Telescopes?

Zhumell’s history began in Duluth, Minnesota, selling 10X42 waterproof binoculars as a subsidiary of Tharlow, Inc. In 2006, Hayneedle purchased Thralow and its subsidiaries, including Telescopes.com, Binoculars.com and Zhumell. Following the acquisition, Zhumell expanded its product range and moved to a new headquarters in Omaha, Nebraska.

On February 28, 2016, Hayneedle was acquired for $90 million by e-commerce retailer Jet.com, which was acquired by Walmart later that year. Shortly after the acquisitions, Zhumell ceased operations. On March 20th, 2018, Celestron Acquisitions Inc. purchased Zhumell and began distributing their Altazimuth reflectors from their facility in Torrance, California.

What is the Location of Zhumell?

Zhumell’s headquarters is currently located at 2835 Columbia St, Torrance. Zhumell moved to California from their headquarters at 9394 W Dodge Rd Ste 300, Omaha, Nebraska after being acquired by Celestron on March 20th, 2018.

What are the Alternative Telescope Brands to Zhumell?

Zhumell is similar to Apertura and Orion because all three brands provide beginner-friendly designs and outsource manufacturing to the same companies. Guan Sheng Optical (GSO) is a Taiwanese manufacturer that makes optics for a wide variety of companies, including Zhumell, Apertura and Orion. Because many of these brands’ telescopes and components come from GSO, the quality is similar in each telescope. However, each company outsources some components to other companies as well, bringing variation to performance and functionality.

Each brand provides unique designs for different customers. However, all three companies provide cost-effective designs for beginners. The combination of similarities in design and manufacturing process has made Apertura and Orion common alternatives to Zhumell.  

Zhumell has two types of telescopes:

1. Zhumell Reflectors

A reflecting telescope uses a single mirror or combination of curved mirrors to reflect light and form an image. Zhumell has a range of reflector telescopes with a wide range of prices. 

The telescopes are categorized as follows: The 100mm, 114mm, and 130mm Z-series tabletop Dobsonians, which are very much portable; the 8-12″ full-sized Z series Dobsonians with very high magnification, and a few inexpensive 76mm AZ reflectors are all available reflector telescopes from Zhumell. 

All of these Zhumell reflectors fall between the $159 to $1300 price range, and their peak magnification ranges from 200X to 600X, depending on the telescope you choose.

2. Zhumell Refractors 

Refracting telescopes, often known as refractor telescopes, are optical telescopes that create images by using lenses rather than mirrors as their objective. 

Refractors have two advantages over reflectors: they can quickly and easily connect to any smartphone via their adapters. Almost all are more portable, but however, refractors tend to have a smaller highest magnification range compared to their reflector counterparts. They have a very limited highest magnification range of 118X-165X, but they are still worth looking at. Here is a list of some of the Zhumell Refractors; The Zhumell 50mm AZ, the Zhumell 60mm AZ and finally, theZhumell 70mm AZ.

What Can You See With Zhumell Telescopes In General?

With Zhumell telescopes you can see:

  • Mercury and Venus
  • Dark regions of Mars
  • Jupiter’s cloud belts
  • Great red spot
  • Pluto
  • Catalog galaxies
  • The Orion Nebula
  • The Pleiades star cluster
  • Planets
  • Passing comets
  • Total eclipse of the moon
  • The rings of Saturn
  • Possibly the colors of Uranus and Neptune
  • Star clusters
  • Galaxies
  • Nebulae

Are Zhumell telescopes worth the price?

Zhumell Reflectors are of high quality and come collimated (Collimation is the process of aligning all components in a telescope to bring light to its best focus) out of the box, making these reflectors easy to use. The Zhumell reflectors prices are ranging from $119 to $1300, there is a Zhumell reflector for every budget within the range. Whether you want a simple view of passing comets to detailed views of Saturn’s rings, there is a Zhumell reflector for everyone. 

The Zhumell Refractors, on the other hand, are extremely lightweight and portable, making them ideal for travel and camping trips. They are good for viewing celestial objects and ideal for taking close-up shots of nature. They also come with smartphone adapters making them easy to integrate with smartphones for capturing pictures and recording video.

The durable, sturdy construction of the Zhumells means your Zhumell will stand up to years of use and travel because of their great quality. All these reasons make the Zhumells a go-to when purchasing your brand-new telescope.

How to use Zhumell telescopes

Depending on the Zhumell model you wish to work with, specific instructions for setting it up come with the telescopes right off the box. But the process of using the microscope comprises of the following. Before you begin, a rule of thumb is to never! Ever! Point the telescope to the sun without filtration, as this can cause instant blindness in some cases.

The telescope comes together in seconds when you arrive at your observing site. Swing the scope on its lazy susan-style and manually point your telescope as best as possible at the target, then look through the eyepiece. The target should be in the field of view, but if it isn’t, use the slow-motion control dials or knobs on your telescope’s mount to make adjustments until the object is in the center of the eyepiece. When your object is correctly focused, enjoy your beautiful view.

Are Zhumell Telescopes Good?

Zhumell telescopes are designed to fit in the mid-to low-price range of telescopes. In this range, they offer many high-quality parts, features, and craftsmanship that you don’t often get in telescopes in the same price range, making them a wonderful value. 

They have a solid reputation for manufacturing high-quality telescopes that are reasonably priced. Zhumell began when they decided to create telescopes that were better quality for the money than what was available while still being better than average. 

This is underlined in their marketing. The durable, sturdy construction of the Zhumells means your Zhumell will stand up to years of use and travel because of their great quality. These reasons make Zhumell the go-to when purchasing budget-friendly Telescopes.

About Zhumell

Zhumell is a relatively minor brand owned by Hayneedle, a significant eCommerce vendor that was purchased by Walmart’s Jet.com. Zhumell is based in Omaha, Nebraska, in the United States. 

Even though Zhumell is perhaps not the most well-known optical company, the quality of their telescopes is rather relative to the prices they are sold at. They generally have good customer service, and their telescopes come with their required accessories, thus making them a good competitor in the budget-friendly telescope arena.